If other type 2 diabetes medications are not effective, or if they are not tolerated well, a healthcare provider may recommend Victoza. This drug's uses include increasing insulin production in response to meals and decreasing the amount of glucose (sugar) produced by the liver. Both of these effects can help keep your blood sugar under control. This product is not approved for children.
What Is Victoza Used For?Victoza® (liraglutide) is a noninsulin medication approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. It is available with a prescription only. This drug is taken just once a day as an injection under the skin (a subcutaneous injection).
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes (see Diabetes Types). It is also sometimes called adult-onset diabetes or noninsulin-dependent diabetes. Traditionally, type 2 diabetes has been thought of as a condition in which the cells do not respond to insulin as well as they should. As a result, the cells do not take sugar out of the blood very well -- this is why people with type 2 diabetes have high blood sugar.
Most traditional diabetes treatments have focused on insulin -- that is, getting cells to respond better to it. However, scientists are now beginning to appreciate that there are many other factors (such as other noninsulin hormones) that play an important role in the development of type 2 diabetes, and all these factors interact in a complex way that is not fully understood.
Incretin hormones are among some of these newly discovered factors that play an important role in type 2 diabetes. Incretin hormones are secreted by the digestive tract in response to food, and have various effects on the body.
Victoza is an incretin mimetic. This means that it mimics the actions of incretin hormones in the body. As an incretin mimetic, Victoza increases insulin production in response to meals and decreases the amount of glucose (sugar) that the liver produces. This medication also slows the emptying of food from the stomach and decreases the amount of food that people eat.
Because incretin hormones are more active in response to higher blood sugar levels and are less active in response to low blood sugar, the risk of dangerously low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) is low with Victoza. However, combining it with other diabetes medications to lower blood sugar can increase the risk of hypoglycemia (see Victoza and Blood Sugar).